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Electoral electronics

August 07, 2007

Re "39 counties' vote systems in question," Aug. 5

I would like to thank California Secretary of State Debra Bowen for fulfilling her promise to review the voting machines in use in California. Fair voting is the cornerstone of our democracy, and Bowen's efforts will ensure that California voting reflects the will of the voters. I would think that all county registrars of our state would support her decision -- ensuring accurate voting should be the focus of every registrar, and if there is any possibility of fraud (which was confirmed in a University of California report before Bowen's decision), then the necessary steps should be taken. Those registrars who disagree with her decision should perhaps work as lobbyists for the electronic voting machine industry rather than represent voters.

James Therrian

San Diego

Bowen did something very irresponsible by decertifying electronic voting machines so shortly before the February 2008 primary election. Yes, Bowen campaigned on skepticism of electronic voting machines because the base in the Democratic Party was afraid that the voting machine manufacturers delivered the victory for President Bush in Ohio.

No voting method is perfect. From paper ballots to electronic voting systems, there will be ways by which elections can be manipulated. If we want to step toward the future, perhaps California needs to adopt open-source standards in its voting technology. We should look to the Australians in how they run their electronic voting machines.

Matt Munson

Ontario

Note to California's county registrars: Sorry to inconvenience you, but that's why we elected Bowen -- we had faith that she would investigate the security of our voting systems and let the chips fall where they may. Don't sue. Instead, comply and join her in restoring our confidence in the integrity of our electoral process.

Sarah Tamor

Santa Monica

Bravo to Bowen! If more of our elected officials had her courage and intelligence, the public good would be in much better hands. Unfortunately, too many of our leaders at the state and the national levels are easily bamboozled by lobbyists. How refreshing that Bowen can look them straight in the eye and just say no.

Ellen Switkes

Sherman Oaks

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